Handwritten by 16 year old Canadian crooner Shawn Mendes is nothing less than exceptional. The 15-track debut LP only features his vocals and writing, which gave fans a chance to connect better with him. Handwritten depicts the rollercoaster of being a teenager, what it’s like to be in love, out of love, stressed, and happy all in a melodic tone.
In the vibey song “Stitches” he describes what it’s like to fall blindly in love too fast, and how you could be left needing stitches when it’s over. He coos “You watch me bleed until I can’t breathe/I’m shaking, falling onto my knees/and now that I’m without your kisses/I’ll be needing stitches.” Meaning that the relationship wasn’t healthy but he kept it going and now that it’s over his wounds need to be mended.
In “Strings” he switches up the sound by saying he wants what he has going with a girl to progress into something more permanent.
In an interview he explains that “Strings” is “kind of a love story…people are like alright we can hang out but I don’t want any strings attached, like I don’t want any strings attached in this relationship and what I’m saying [in the song] is that I want these strings lets attach these strings and like I wanna be with you forever.”
In “Aftertaste,” Shawn describes being dumped and how one will move on and the other one will realize they messed up, and be left with the “memories and the aftertaste” of the relationship. “Turns out that no one can replace me/I’m permanent you can’t erase me.” You tried replacing me with someone else but turns out there’s no one out there like me. He said in another interview, “it’s a cool, empowering song to get people through being dumped…and it’s empowering just to know like, you don’t need that person just because you were in love at one point.”
“Sometimes it all gets a little too much/But you gotta realize that soon the fog will clear up/and you don’t have to be afraid, because we’re all the same/and we know that sometimes it all gets a little too much.” In “A Little Too Much” he croons encouraging words about how life gets hard but at the end of the day, we’re all human and we all go through something and to not feel alone. It’s okay to be not okay, you will overcome adversity but sometimes it all gets a little too much.
Shawn Mendes definitely proved that he’s more than a six-second singer and that his passion for music is genuine. Handwritten was number one in the country and he’s going on tour with Taylor Swift in the summer. Hopefully he keeps up this drive for many more to come.